Interview: Steve Grad, the pawn stars expert
Image from History Channel
Pawn Star is one of the most succesful tv shows of the History Channel Network that is transmitted in Latin America.It shows people selling or pawning something exotic, strange, with an autograph or that belonged to someone important in history, everything is part of the show.
But for Steve Grad, what happens in the show is part of his daily life, not just because he is one of the experts called by Rick and his team when they have doubts about something, his life really develops around the autentification of objects and autographs.
SWC: How do you start in this business of autograph collecting?
I started at about the age of 8 (46 now) my grandmother always loved autographs and she introduced me to hers and from there she started to take my brother and I to local baseball card shows in the Chicago area and from there I started to wait at Comiskey Park in Chicago for player autographs. I’ve been at it ever since.
SWC: Which one has been the most “strange” autograph you have verified?
Good question and usually signed undergarments and such.
SWC: From Star Wars, which autograph is the one who is more falsified?
For sure its Harrison Ford. He’s the franchises most popular character and is also it’s most forged. Even though Ford is a good in person signer (I’ve gotten him in person my self 50+ times) and he’s done plenty of signings the desire for his signature remains at all time high.
SWC: How may autographs do you have in your collection?
No idea anymore. I wish I knew but if I was to put a count on it, it would probably be close to 100,000+ but that’s just a guess.
SWC: From all the ones you have, which one is your favorite?
So hard to pick a favorite! Some of my most cherished.
1. Star Wars (A New Hope) signed insert poster with Alec Guinness, Peter Cushing and the entire main cast and credited poster cast.
2. The first autograph I ever got in person, former White Sox pitcher Richard Dotson.
3. Signed John Belushi/ Dan Aykroyd Blues Brothers 8×10.
4. Signed 1977 Topps Star Wars set just 34 cards short of completion.
5. Original 8×10 signed by Metallica. Less than a handful of these exist, originally sent out to the first 100 members of the “Met Club” signed by Cliff Burton, James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich and Kirk Hammett.
SWC: How has been your experience in the Pawn Star show and how long has you been working with them?
It’s been great, I’ve sincerely enjoyed my time on the show. I started filming in January of 2013 and since then I’ve filmed 90 episodes, about 60 of which have aired.
SWC: It’s worth to collect autographs now in the era when the people prefers to take a selfie with the people who admires?
Of course! People will always collect autographs. Taking selfies with celebrities is just another way of collecting!
SWC: What is www.collectors.com?
It’s a feature of collectors universe the parent company of PSA and PSA/DNA. It’s a search engine that the company had developed to help collectors.
SWC: What kind of advices do you have for autographs collectors, specially the ones who are just starting?
If it’s too good to be true it probably is. Don’t buy cheap thinking you are getting a deal, you probably are not. Do not buy stuff you don’t know is real and use a reputable company like PSA/DNA to verify your autographs.
SWC: Had you been in Colombia? What do you know about our country?
I have not, maybe someday!
SWC: Do you have an autograph from a Colombian person like John Leguizamo or Sofia Vergara?
I do have John’s autograph.
Thank you so much for answer us and it our pleasure to have you in our blog.